The fresh wave of viral infection of Lumpy skin disease (LSD) in cattle has spread to newer geographical areas of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, while eight other States continue to grapple with the outbreak that is also impacting the milk production.
The latest reports from Indore district, Madhya Pradesh, suggested LSD-like symptoms in a few cattle, while Maharashtra on Monday reported loss of at least 22 cattle heads in the past one month.
The disease has spread to 13 districts of Vidarbha and Marathwada regions of the State. The worst-hit States are Rajasthan and Gujarat, where the disease has spread to over two dozen districts each.
In Gujarat, the official data show total infected animals at about 1.45 lakh, of which 1.16 lakh have been treated and 5,200 cattle have succumbed to the disease since the outbreak started in April-May.
“The situation is under control. The vaccination is progressing at a rapid pace,” informed a senior official at the Gujarat Animal Husbandry Department. The daily new LSD cases in the State hover at around 1,500-2,000.
Rajasthan has suffered bigger loss of cattle heads, estimated to be more than 10,000 since the outbreak.
Milk collection down
The daily milk collection has already decreased by 3-5 per cent in various pockets, which shows the disease’s impact on production.
“Once infected, the animals catch temperature, which affects the milk output. So there is naturally some impact on milk production due to the outbreak,” said an official.
The disease is of high economic importance as it causes reduction in milk yield (up to 65 per cent during acute phase and 35 per cent after recovery), abortion, infertility, lameness and rarely, death (1-5 per cent).
In Punjab, the reports indicated that the farmer bodies have raised the concerns on the fast spreading infection and asked the Centre to declare the disease as an epidemic. In Haryana, too, the infection has raised alarms as the Gurugram administration last month banned transport of cattle.
In Jammu and Kashmir region, more than 5,000 animals are said to be showing symptoms. “The infection is not spreading very fast. And we have already implemented the containment measures. There are suspected cases and we are attending to it,” said a senior official of Animal Husbandry Department in Jammu.
Source : The Hindu Business Line sep 06 2022